Sunday, January 17, 2010

Bringing on the Big Ones!

The new 85-29 cell vs. the old L-16 battery
It has been 10 years that I have been working on Viking Star, Wow...

One of the early decisions was about the electrical system. I decided to go primarily 12v, with a good inverter to cover Hair dryers and the Refrigerator. In researching batteries I compared normal flooded lead-acid, AGM, VR, and even looked at some Telco-type batteries. In the end I decided to go with old-fashioned lead-acid. This was mostly due to cost, and seeing as I have good access to the battery compartment, I could easily keep up on their maintenance.

The other decision was which ones? Golf cart batteries are very popular. I personally like the L-16's better if you have the height. Typically folks look at batteries just by cost per AH (Amp Hour, the amount of energy a battery can 'store'). But if one also puts in the number of cycles a battery is designed for it brings new light. Those golf cart batteries are designed for 3-400 cycles over 4 or so years. The L16's, maybe 6-700 cycles over 7 years or so. In the end I selected Industrial Cells, these guys are designed to give 4,000 cycles over a 20+ life span.

I hade been using two L16 for the past 6 years - that gave us (barely) enough stored electricty for a weekend. Here you can see a picture of the old L16's we have been using for the past 6 years, and one of the new cells. A bit bigger, but should point out the new ones are 2v cells while the L16 is a 6v battery. A more apples-to-apples photo would have 3 of the new cells in comparison to the old L16!

All Ready for the new ones!

Dan the Electric Man!

Careful now!


Up and Over

Down she goes

Half way there (Well, more like 2/3rds...)

Ok, these are a bit over the top. That is true. But one thing I like is quiet. These new batteries should allow us to sit at anchor for 4-5 days without having to run the generator. Then we can recharge the batteries with the main motor in 1 hour of moving the boat for each day we were at anchor.

That is why I picked these batteries.

However, do have to tell ya, if something goes wrong with these beasts - I am selling the boat!

1 comment:

  1. Fun day moving batteries! I especially liked the "Hum..." photo -- us both looking at the gap between boat and dock (I'm sure there must be some kind of technical nautical term for that space). "What if one of these babies drops into the drink?" But...they're installed. Power up!